Zen 101

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Genjokoan Discussion

With respect,


Good Morning Everyone,



Last night's discussion was animated, thorough, and dynamic. We are indeed fortunate to have such thoughtful, inquiring, and dedicated practitioners coming together in our Zendo to manifest the dharma itself. We had only one open seat, which is delightful.



I saw many of us have our paradigms seriously challenged this evening. The sense of the questions coming to and fro was, "What do you mean, there is no separate and abiding self that survives 'us' after death? " And, "What about 're-incarnations?" and so on...



One thing I would like to say is this, Let's let our practice answer our most disturbing questions. Disturbing questions and challenging teachings are what our study practice is all about! The question I asked Leslee, "Show me one thing about you that is unchanging,." is an "Everyman" question intended to help us cut through our paradigm of a constant "I." This question is akin to the ancient, "Show me your original face, the face you had before your father and mother were born."



Such questions are not intended to have actual answers, rather, their intent is to take us to the edge of our paradigm. We are asked through the work on the question, to pick up a hammer and shatter the paradigm we use to frame our existence.



The daily practice of zazen should be the starting point of our inquiry. Remember, if we think we "know" something, we will never see the thing we think we know. In Zen practice, we open ourselves to "don't know" and reside there.



Be well.

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